Cataclysm is almost upon us. Everyone has had a great deal of notice for all the things that will be changed, added, and removed, and much to my exceptional good fortune, my disappointments are minimal compared to the last time Blizzard announced an expansion. Unlike when Wrath of the Lich King came out and I was only in my 50s, I am ending this expansion about as kitted out as you can get as far as gear, I’m a stone’s throw from 9000 achievement points, and I’ve completed all but a few of the hardest encounters in the game. I may have missed the Amani Warbear and pre-nerf Sunwell, but I got my Zulian Tiger, and while I wasn’t able to kill him, I did see pre-4.0 heroic LK on 25man. I rode all manner of dragons and horses, slew fearsome beasts, old gods, men, and myth. I mined A LOT. I became a Gurubashi Grand Master and a Master Angler of Azeroth for winning the Stranglethorne Vale fishing tournament (made more difficult by the fact that I had been grinding Bloodsail rep not too long ago). Ever try to turn in a quest in Booty Bay when everything is trying to kill you?
There is a lot to look forward to in the coming months, and now, with two years of experience under my belt, I’m going to experience what it is like to be awake at 3AM when Cata goes live on servers and I race for server-first 85 on my humble realm, only to race for Glory of the Hero and raid server firsts. Lots of racing in my future it seems, should change my name to Jeff Gordon. I’m looking forward to my highlighter-colored troll druid with transformable batman mode and seeing the new races and their opening questlines.
Being 80 certainly helped in my enjoyment of the pre-cata festivities. The elemental invasion was a pretty novel idea, and while it must be frustrating for the low level players to have to leave the city every 3 hours or die horribly, it certainly has its moments. I imagine on the very large servers these invasions are over almost as soon as they begin, and on smaller ones, well, maybe no one ever goes to defend Thunder Bluff. I suppose Bliz knew this so they didn’t bother invading Silvermoon or Exodar since they’d just be camped by NPCs for the duration.